School violence is on the rise—namely, how frequently it occurs. Since 2011, a mass shooting has occurred on a school campus (on average) every 64 days.
Not only have mass public shootings become more commonplace, but the number of teachers and students being threatened with violence has also increased. This alarming rate of increase has sparked a national public debate and has parents and school officials asking themselves, “What can we do?”
If you are worried about the safety of your student while they are at school, you are not alone. The good news is, you are also not helpless. You can start by finding out what your child’s school is doing to protect against and prevent violent threats.
1. What is your school doing to create a safe environment—do they cultivate a safe environment and promote safety awareness and preparedness?
2. What communication systems or drills are in place in the event of an emergency?
3. Does your student’s school have a team assigned specifically to student safety?
4. What training do your school administrators and security personnel have—have they been trained on how to manage crisis situations?
5. How safe does your student feel while they are at school?
6. How accessible is your student’s school—can anyone walk in at any time?
7. Does your child and other students at the school know whom to report suspicious incidents to—who is assigned to investigate and report on sexual assault or school violence cases?
8. Does your student’s school have safety preparedness programs—do they have security systems in place?
9. Does your student’s school have safety programs in the event of natural disasters?
10. Does your student’s school have a problem with drug or alcohol abuse—are weapons prevalent on campus? Is there safety education available regarding these potential issues?
It’s likely that most of your concerns are also the concerns of your school’s administration. If these issues have not already been addressed, it is in their best interest to bring it to their attention so any potential problems can be prevented.
The best safety measure schools can take is implementing a secure screening process to stop any threats before they enter. Having a system like KeepnTrack helps schools monitor the traffic of students, teachers, and visitors. Systems like this also serve as a deterrent and the first line of defense against any oncoming threats.
Talk to your school’s administration to find out what safety measures they are taking—if nothing else, you will gain some peace of mind.